We’ve Missed the Flight!
I was getting anxious; it must have been the tenth time I had looked at my watch. The minutes ticked by. In my mind I was desperately trying to hold back time, but, the hands on my watch, impervious to my thoughts, continued to march resolutely around the dial. We should have boarded the plane two hours ago.
I glanced around; the departure desk was still closed; my wife, daughter and I were sat on the floor in an area packed with all the other passengers who were looking equally bored. Our aeroplane stood, waiting, outside the window. It had taxied up to the gate about 30 minutes ago. Through the window it appeared abandoned, motionless, doors locked, lights out.
We were returning home from Thailand. I was worried because we needed to make a connection in London to fly back to Manchester. I realised that, unless the flight back to London was at some fantastic speed, there was no chance that we would make the connection.
The point of no return, the time we needed to depart, had passed. There was nothing we could do. What was the point, I thought, of spending the next twelve hours worrying about something that was out of our hands.
We boarded the plane, after a delay of three hours. Twelve hours later we arrived in London. As I had expected, we had missed our connection and so were now stranded for the night in the arrivals lounge at Heathrow.
I talked with the airline staff at EVA and they generously agreed, although, they said, it was not company policy to give us two complimentary hotel rooms for the night. We thanked God for their generosity.
Without this, because of our lack of finances, we would have had no choice but to sleep in the airport lounge; and with a 4 year old child that would have been traumatic. Yet, they said, we would still need to make our own arrangements in the morning to get home. During the night we prayed about this dilemma and asked the Lord to help us.
Look for the Asian Lady
In the morning we boarded the shuttle bus which took us to the terminal. I prayed. I sensed guidance,
“When you get to the ticket desk, talk to the Asian woman.”
That was all. Direction! Hope!
There was a queue when we arrived. I looked at the desks, one of the woman seated at the terminals was Asian, fantastic! Now, I thought, how can I manage to get to talk to her.
I contemplated whether I should let others in the queue pass me so that we would be called by her. We reached the front of the queue. It was impossible to predict who would call us. I decided to let God lead, and waited.
“Next, please,” someone called.
I looked in the direction of the voice, and smiled. It was the Asian lady. I described our predicament: we needed to get home to Manchester.
“Could we use the ticket from yesterday?” I asked.
She looked at her terminal, and informed us that it was not possible to transfer the ticket. My heart sank. I started to pray.
She then offered us a flight at a reduced rate, but this came to over £350! There was no way we could afford that. I told her we didn’t have that much money.
I kept praying, earnestly pleading with God to help us get home.
Home at Last
Despondently, we turned to leave the desk. I still had faith that God would in some way help us, but I didn’t know how. Then she called us back.
“On this occasion,” she said, smiling, “I can change your booking to the next flight, but you need to be quick, it is departing soon.”
I turned back to look at her, a big smile spread across my face. I wanted to hug her, but I politely thanked her instead.
God had provided for us. I praised Him there and then in front of her. Whether she heard me or not I don’t know. God had miraculously answered our prayers. We thanked Him, our hearts full of joy, and ran to the gate clutching our new tickets.